“Underbelly is now more than four walls with a kitchen. It’s a philosophy that we use as our compass, not just in cooking, but in life.
This is the philosophy that has guided Chris Shepherd throughout his career and, most recently, his decision to close his flagship restaurant Underbelly. UB Preserv, which opened quietly on May 8, preserves the ethos of Underbelly and the traditions and cultures of Houston. Chris and his team now have the freedom to cook outside the strict confines of Underbelly’s self-imposed limitations of locality, whole animal, and an ever-changing menu.
New menu items include a hot seafood tower that is served in bamboo dumpling steamers packed with king crab, nuoc mam-marinated shrimp, Valentina butter roasted oysters and steamed singing pink scallops. The queso fundido is made with blood sausage and pork fat tortillas and Crawfish and Noodles—made with garlic, crawfish tails and crispy rice noodles procured from local Vietnamese shop Van Loi.
Cocktails were also created with a nod to Houston’s diversity, including the Money Cat, made with vodka, salted plum, lemon and soda, his take on the popular Vietnamese beverage Soda Xi Muoi.
Hours: Tuesday–Thursday 5-10pm, Friday–Saturday 5-11pm, Sunday 11am-4pm Dim Sum-Style Brunch
All photos courtesy of Julie Soefer Photography.
Feature image is Crawfish and Noodles.